Sight seeing

Thiksey Monastery

Thiksey Monastery or Thiksay Gompa the Gelugpa sect of Tibetan Buddhism. It is located on top of a hill in Thiksey approximately 19 kilometres (12 mi) east of Leh Ladakh, India. It is famous for its similarity to the Potala Palace in Lhasa, Tibet and is the largest Monastery in central Ladakh, The Gompa is located at an altitude of 3,600 mt (11,800 ft) in the Indus Valley. It is a twelve-story Thiksey Monastery, many items of Buddhist art such as stupas, statues, thangkas, wall paintings and swords. One of the main points of interest is the Maitreya Temple installed to commemorate the visit of His Holiness The 14th Dalai Lama to this monastery in 1970; it is 15mt (49 ft) high statue of Maitreya Buddha (known as Future Buddha), covering two stories of the building


Thiksey Monastery, in the early 15th century, Je Tsongkhapa, the founder of the Gelug School of Tibetan Buddhism - often called "the Yellow Hats" - sent six of his disciples to remote regions of Tibet to spread the teachings of the new Gelugpa school. Tsongkhapa gave one of his disciples, Jangsem Sherab Zangpo, with small statue of Amitayus (knowns as Amitabha), containing bone powder and a drop of Tsongkhapa's own blood. Tsongkhapa directed Jangsem Sherab Zangpo to meet the King of Ladakh with a message seeking his help in the propagation of Buddhism. The King, loved the gift of the statue. After this meeting, the King directed his minister to help Sherab Zangpo to establish a monastery of the Gelugpa order in Ladakh. As a result, in 1433, Sherab Zangpo founded a small village Temple called Lhakhang Serpo "Yellow Temple" in Stagmo, north of the Indus. In spite of his efforts, the lamas (means monks) who embraced the Gelugpa order were initially few, although some of his disciples became eminent figures over the years Thiksey Monastery grew in prominence in Ladakh, second only to Hemis Monastery, administering ten other monasteries in the region, such as Diskit Gompa, Spituk Gompa, Likir Gompa and Stok Gompa. The Thiksey Gompa came to own or control 1,327 acres (537 ha) of land and some 25 villages became attached to the monastery. In around 1770, the lama of Hanle Monastery dictated that his elder son should inherit the throne of Ladakh while other princes should be lamas at Thiksey and Spituk. As a result, princes such as Jigmet Namgyal served as lamas at Thiksey

Inside Monastery

Maitreya Buddha One of the main attractions inside the monastery is the Maitreya (future Buddha) Temple erected to commemorate visit of His Holiness The 14th Dalai Lama to this monastery in 1970. Assembly Hall A wall of the dukhang means ‘assembly hall or main prayer hall’ depicts murals of the Tibetan calendar with the Wheel of Life. The assembly hall. Left: Buddha in inner sanctum. Right: Throne of Dalai lama and head lama.The assembly hall also has an image of the Thousand-armed Avalokitesvara with Padmasambhava. Tara Temple The temple is dedicated to the Goddess Tara. There are 21 small status of the Tara. You can find many murals here. The courtyard mural depicts Tsong Khapa, the Buddha, Padmasambhava and Mahakala Lamokhang Temple This temple holds many numerous volumes of scriptures including Stangyur and Kangyur. Women are not allowed inside this temple. There is a small school on top of the temple where young boys are taught to become Lamas (means monks). Beyond the temple, you can find various white huts, the residence of Lamas. Nunnery This is the school for nuns. Today the nunnery house in 26 nuns, ranging from the ages of 43 to 87. The Dutch Foundation for Ladakhi Nuns (DFLN), a charitable organisation also operates in Nyerma, providing monetary and individual services to support the Buddhist nuns of Ladakh Festivals The Thiksey Gustor annual festival held in the monastery, which is starts from the 17th to 19th day of the ninth month of the Tibetan calendar (October–November). Mask dance (known as Chams) are performed as a part of this ritual. Sand mandalas are made for smaller festivals.